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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2012 1:26 am 
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Gallant Game
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I can concur with the comments re Aussie Langshans. I believe they are the unknown and undiscovered utility layer that the world (and even Australia) are practically unaware of. The magic of the breed is that despite being kept for many years now as a mostly exhibition fowl they have mostly managed to retain excellent utility laying characteristics.

While their cousin the Australorp is far from their former egg laying glory days the Langshan may have captured and retained all that the Australorp was once capable of. Even the look of the Langshan is closer to the appearance of utility Australorps of old. The Langshan pre-dated and contributed to the make-up of the Australorp. But here the comparison ends because today's unique Australian Langshan is handsome to look at and has its own wonderful calm temperament.

The unique Langshan breed of today owes its form largely to the tireless work of poultry statesman Pat Birchall, of NSW. Although being categorised as a 'heavy' breed it is actually one of the smallest of all standard utility breeds, weight coming in about the same or slightly less than the Leghorn (according to the Australian Poulty Standards 2).

All this lends itself to the Aussie Langshan being an ideal non-commercial (pure-bred not hybrid) backyard layer. Even those fancy corporations that produce commercial layers would love to get their hands on these.

I should qualify this by saying that these characteristics are a generalisation. Some strains of Langies might not be such good layers, but I haven't heard of them. However I would like to see some records, trials and breeding programs to quantify their usefulness without compromising their fine appealing characteristics.

The ideal sustainable breed is one that is not bred to any extremes. An all-rounder of looks, utility traits, health and longevity etc. is ideal. Even a breed that is bred purely for ultimate egg laying numbers is bound to compromise on the other important areas. I believe the Australian Langshan may be one of the few pure breeds in the world that achieve the right balance. ML

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:50 am 
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Junior Champion Bird
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From Poultry Newspaper, Oct 14, 1950 -

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2012 2:11 pm 
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Hi guys very informative thread
attach is a pdf thought might be appropriate


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ALBCchicken_assessment-2.pdf [343.52 KiB]
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 1:51 pm 
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Wyandotte Warrior
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ikasigardens wrote:
Hi guys very informative thread
attach is a pdf thought might be appropriate


I posted a reference to this article earlier in this thread. Very interesting read particularly in relation to looking for the qualiities needed in a pure-bred flock to produce the optimum no of eggs.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 2:12 pm 
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Junior Champion Bird
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Denis, you posted it in the thread ' A realistic view of a fowls egg laying .." which was locked.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 3:40 pm 
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You're right there, Manna Sorry.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 5:54 pm 
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Junior Champion Bird
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From The Feathered World, Oct 3, 1930 -

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2013 1:39 pm 
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Gallant Game
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Another interesting article in the current edition of Australian Poultry, this time by George Norman, that mentions Utility vs Exhibition Australorps.

In discussing the difference in the conformation of Utility and Exhibition Australorps, Norman states;

"any genuine utility-type fowls in any breeds would struggle to compete against exhibition specimens. The leghorn shown today is very different from the laying strain, as are exhibition RIR when compared with laying birds of yesteryear. I do think that there is merit in reviewing where we are in our breeding and judging and what relevance should be given to the original purpose and reason for development of individual breeds".


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2013 4:41 pm 
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Champion Bird
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Yes it's great to see utility qualities are once more appreciated On the show bench, about time


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 15, 2013 8:59 pm 
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Showy Hen
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This has been an excellent, interesting and informative thread :-D I've just read it from start to finish and really enjoyed it, particularly the old clippings and cuttings. I can't believe black orp hens averaged 212 eggs in 1930, I guess the profusion of feather now precludes that happening again. Thank you to all posters :hiya:

In the UK, there are utility classes at either one or both of the 2 big national shows (can't remember).

I used to keep a few utility LF white sussex (originally from a 50 year closed flock) as well as ordinary LF red and white sussex. I kept them for fun and did not conduct laying trials or anything like that, so all observations are anecdotal. The utility hens were small in size (in between a 'normal' sussex bantam and LF) but the best would be extremely heavy for their size, the body weighty and compact, feathers sleek and close to the body. They would be passed over in a show class. The best ones would be extremely active on the range and food/growth conversion was excellent. However, even the best layers were no better than some of my other birds - sussex, orp/dotte cross, polands and even a couple of orps. Personally I don't find the flavour of Sussex remarkable, I'd rather eat something else. And actually in my view you get a better tasting egg from a poland!

I hadn't thought of utility keepers possibly being the ones to cause standards-writers to increase weights, food for thought.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2013 9:43 pm 
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This may be of interest to those interested in the history of utility judging. Unfortunately I don't know anything about it. It's a document that I saw at the FCAQ museum which lists some of the awards given in certain years to Lindsay and Dobson Hatchery. The names of the awards give a little insight into what was being judged. Perhaps it will jog someone's memory. The latest entry is 1960 so it's within living memory.

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Source: on display at the Feather Clubs Association of Qld Aviculture and Pigeon Museum at Caboolture Historic Village. http://www.qldpoultry.com.au/fcaq_museum_8.html

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 3:11 pm 
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It is good to see someone the stature of George Norman stating firstly that there is such a thing as utility australorps which are different from the show type as there have been many discussions on this site in which it has been denied and that the utility qualities which first defined the breed should be taken into account , not trying to start a fight just thought it was refreshing to hear.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 9:13 pm 
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Gallant Game
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http://www.barrelsfarmpoultry.co.uk/#


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 9:32 pm 
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Nice Marans and Welsummers there. Wish we could get them in Australia. Not sure what they contribute to this thread though?


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 8:52 am 
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Gallant Game
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infoaddict wrote:
Nice Marans and Welsummers there. Wish we could get them in Australia. Not sure what they contribute to this thread though?


Selection & Maintenance of Utility Qualities; is what this breeder is after.


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